Projected costs of new stations rising


From Tuesday's Globe and Mail

The projected costs of two new stations on the extended Toronto-York Spadina subway line have increased a total of $72-million because of engineering complications from a high water table, rising construction costs and Toronto's green standards for new buildings.

The Toronto Transit Commission said a plan to integrate the Sheppard West stop with GO Transit has also driven up the price tag of that station, which is expected to feature a green roof with swept curves and airplane-like wing flaps to evoke the aeronautical history of nearby Downsview Park.

The cost of Sheppard West has nearly doubled to $102-million from an original estimate of $59.2-million. York University station is expected to cost $115-million, up from $86-million.

The TTC said it has found $12-million in project savings to offset the hike and is negotiating with GO Transit to foot part of the bill for Sheppard. The commission promises value-engineering studies to find other savings, but adds it will rely on budget contingencies if the project remains over budget.

The TTC will consider preferred concepts for the two stations at a meeting Thursday. The commission will also seek public input on the designs.

"This is the first public viewing of these concepts," said Andy Bertolo, chief project manager of the $2.6-billion, six-station Toronto-York-Spadina subway extension.

Sheppard West is notable for its swept, low-lying design - limited height is a requirement because of Downsview Airport - and the fact the station will be integrated with a new GO Transit station on the Barrie line.

"It's an airport area, so it gives you an impression of being a wing, or a kite, or a leaf. I've heard all sorts of things," said Mr. Bertolo.

GO passengers will be able to exit their platform and walk down the stairs into the TTC station within 10 seconds, he said. "Not even Union Station downtown is that integrated."

The York University station features a swooping roof that links two entrance pavilions and a "lightwell" on the Harry W. Arthurs Common.




Commentary by the Ottawa mens Centre


Ottawa needs to set an example and its in the City of Ottawa where the Federal Government needs to invest in an example of a well planned underground Metro that would have cost a hell of lot less if the city had not engaged in making a cheap bus system appear to be a train system.

The result is chaos, the system is already at maximum capacity, while the city continuously allows and encourages outlying development without any way of handling the traffic generated by those developments.

Metro's appear to have high price tags that create 'sticker shock', but they are CHEAP in the big picture because of the wealth and asset they create.

Virtually every person in the entire city is doomed to spending increasing amounts of time commuting and the average speeds are going to get lower with the amount of time spent in GridLock increasing until the entire working day is constant gridlock.

The only solution is to move the transportation into the air or underground. Chinooks are just too expensive for civilian use so that leaves the underground Metro as "the only option".

The longer the delay before construction starts, the greater the economic prejudice the country will suffer.

Take a look at Moscow, Paris, Istanbul, London, and New York, these Cities could not function or be the economic power houses they are without their Metro systems.

Its time for the Federal Government to wake up and make some sound decisions now about how Metro's in Canada will be developed.

The funding is simple and guaranteed. The real estate value created, by itself, is sufficient to pay for its entire development. Metro Stations can create entire underground business districts whose real estate value will again, fund the entire development.

Canadian Politicians are just too scared to demonstrate real vision for Canada's future and instead, choose to make short term political decisions that are generally not the right long term decision for Canada's future.